Not Much But More Than I Thought

Due to a combination of recent health issues and a tremendous lack of personal time in my life, I do not believe that I’ll achieve my goal set forth for April’s Camp NaNoWriMo. I will do my best and write as much as I can but at this point I do not believe that I’ll cross the threshold I set out to cross within the timeframe allotted.

 

Rather than run myself ragged trying to do all the things, I’m going to focus on a few specifics which need to take priority. So, if you hear from me even less than usual lately, that’s why.

 

I am determined to pick up where I left off at the next Camp NaNoWriMo event later in the Summer.

 

Aside from that, only a few things are happening here.

 

I’m just living on soup, Duolingo German, as well as the music of Die Ärzte, and Farin Urlaub Racing Team. I’m almost at the point where I know the lyrics to some of the songs. I’m happy about that.

 

To be honest, probably sixty percent of the words I’ve listened to over the past ten days have been German. I might consider switching my profile language preferences to German to get me to use my linguistic translation capabilities more.

 

I’m considering becoming a vegetarian again. Between the fact that I do actually get ill from eating some forms of animal product to the fact that there is a health benefit to being a vegetarian for me to the rising cost of food prices in the supermarket, I’m definitely looking into this one. This time, I’m going to do my research and find the appropriate methods for me to do so.

 

I’m dyeing yarn now as a hobby. This is part pain reliever/part stress reliever and it works on both fronts. Thus far, I’ve managed (with the help of the Maternal Parental on two of the four ounce dyes) three hanks and one cake of four ounce yarn in Lion Brand’s Fisherman’s Wool, in addition to the two cakes of four ounce yarn I dyed previously. I’ve also dyed a hank of Cascade 220 Superwash and a hank of Red Heart’s Heart and Sole Sock yarn.

 

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Cascade 220 Superwash

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Red Heart’s Heart & Sole

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Lion Brand’s Fisherman’s Wool

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Lion Brand’s Fisherman’s Wool

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Lion Brand’s Fisherman’s Wool

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Lion Brand’s Fisherman’s Wool

 

 

The end result of the four ounce dyes will be a sweater. I don’t know what I’m going to do with the Cascade and the sock yarn.

 

 

Starting next week (I hope!) there will  be Basil and Spearmint in the Aerogarden. The tomatoes are making me sneeze entirely too much to hang around for much longer. Plus, they’re coming to the end of their cycle. I got another good crop of tomatoes off of them but it is time for them to go.

 

 

The Basil I’ll be growing will be Genovese, Cinnamon, and Lettuce Leaf. In addition to this, I’ll be growing Spearmint. I really have missed growing it and look forward to having it in my room again. I’m also going to attempt growing Lemongrass again. Hopefully, it will thrive with the hot summers we tend to get nowadays even in my window.

 

 

Until the next time, have a safe and fantastic journey around the Sun. Take care, my friends. Rolling on the floor laughingRed heartRainbow

Random Sunday Updates

Hello Everyone. It has been some time since I last posted here. I have been, admittedly, a bit busy, of late. Instead of focusing on Facebook and goofing off online, I’ve been focusing on myself and developing my potential for future application in the meatspace. I’ll just run through a few of the highlights here, shall I?

 

OK Cupid

 

I have finally gone through on the longstanding promise of deleting my OK Cupid account. The site just stopped being fun. When it first started, there were all kinds of bells and whistles to make you want to stay on the site for hours. Now, it’s more and more like the other sites. On top of that, the avalanche of crude messages I received should have been enough to make me leave a lot sooner than a few weeks ago. Had it not been for the deluge of bad messages, I might have connected with a truly wonderful person I exchanged e-mails with in 2010 a lot sooner than recently. It’s a long story, possibly for another time and another post. Suffice it to say, I haven’t been this blissfully happy in quite some time.

 

The Departure of the Protégé

 

My Knitting and Crocheting Protégé is moving out of state in a few weeks. Not like I got a chance to do more than get him fitted out in hooks and a few needle sets. I had plans for so much more but now, if we both have the time, it’ll have to be long distance and via Skype or something.

 

This leaves a vacancy for a Protégé in my life. I’m going to attempt to recruit the Maternal Parental for the role. She’s been showing an interest in the hook set I bought her years ago. Perhaps we could spend quality time together crocheting and knitting? Who knows? It would be a nice thing to have happen.

 

The Fitness

 

Up through to the present day, I’ve been focused on improving my health through diet and exercise. I’ve finally managed to make headway on this front. I’ve lost thirty-two pounds and several inches thus far. I’m now in smaller clothing, which is nice. I even managed to fit a dress I bought in 2011 that I was barely able to fit then. It’s loose on me now. My routine is pretty brutal during the week and much more forgiving during the weekends (to give my body a chance to rest). I’m hoping that I can maintain this level of activity for a while before ramping things up again for the next phase of fitness. A highlight was when I got in over 100,000 steps this past week.

 

The Container Gardens

 

The plants keep growing. After all, they’re living entities. Specifically the Mega Cherry Tomato in the Aerogarden. Since I last posted, some of the tomatoes have ripened and some have been harvested. They’re very tasty too.

 

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In addition to the tomatoes growing amazingly well, I have an inflorescence in my house. One of my Snake plants has decided to put up a flower spike.

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The Comestibles

 

Aside from the above pictured tomatoes, I had something of a treat a few weeks ago. A dear relative gifted half a bushel of the most delectable Maryland Peaches to the Maternal Parental and I. Below is an example Peach.

 

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So, of course, I had to make Peach Pie. It was practically a requirement that I do this in the name of Science, Asgard, and Loki. It may not have won the Great British Baking Show with its looks but it sure was tasty. *grin*

 

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The Culling

 

In recent weeks, I’ve finally done the Mega Culling I’ve threatened to do for a while now. My books, my precious books. Some of them are up for grabs now. Some have already been re-homed. I hope they give many years of enjoyment to their new Humans.

 

A before and after of my bookcase:

 

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More books may be culled. The decision hasn’t been finalized yet.

 

 

The Old School Gaming

 

Ten years ago, I bought a six in one gaming set from Amazon, it includes a set of dominoes, a deck of cards, a Chess/Checkers board with pieces for both games, a Cribbage set, and a Backgammon set.

 

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I had bought this with the intention of spending quality time with people but, sadly, no one wanted to play. It’s all video games now. So, I’m going to teach myself to play these games, find video games for them, and play by myself. Then, when that glistening, shining moment arises where someone asks the $64,000.00 question of “Do you know how to play…” I’ll be able to say, “Yep”.

 

The Crafting

 

Finally, I can update the world, nay, Multiverse on the progress of these damned socks. The Rainstorm II Socks are Finished. Complete. Finito. My proof.

 

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It only took me from 19 February 2015 until 25 September 2016 to get them completed. As I stated previously on Instagram, this is not acceptable. The next pair of socks I start get finished within a month or I don’t get to keep them. Instead, they’ll go to the nearest Mens 9.5/Womens 11/43cm shoe size wearing person I can find. My knitting is fast enough to have finished these socks within a week of starting them, if not sooner. That’s with ample breaks to rest my finger from the brass needlepoint of my circular needles (Magic Loop knitting). Just because I was able to put it down repeatedly didn’t mean that I should have.

 

Anyway, onto the socks themselves. They’re very toasty warm and deliciously soft on my feet. The yarn was a dream to knit with and I’m really looking forward to making more socks in the other colorways of this yarn, which is Stroll Hand Painted from Knit Picks. The pattern is called Misti Sock Family and the pattern designer’s name is Kate Atherley.

 

Once I completed the socks, I decided to work on a crochet project for someone very dear to me. It’s something I’m presently working on actually. Once completed, it’ll be the second Amigurumi Adipose Baby I’ll have made but the first I’ve made in wool. Let me just say that, but for my cheap nature, if I could afford to work in wool all the time, I would. This project has been nothing short of luxurious on my hands. The wool was actually his request, so I thank him for requesting it. This pattern is called the Amigurumi Adipose and the pattern designer is Jennifer Christensen.

 

This is as far as I’ve gotten:

 

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All I have left to do is crocheting, stuffing, and attaching the feet before weaving in the ends. I hope to get this done in an hour or two.

 

NaNoWriMo 2016

 

I will be participating in National Novel Writing Month 2016. I have no idea what I’m going to write as of today. I suppose this makes me a “Pantser” until I come up with an idea? I still haven’t finished the novel from last year. Some day…

 

This year, I’m going to be a lot more basic with my characters, background, and storyline. I want to finish something tangible by the deadline. What I have from last year is okay, it’s just a lot of writing with more writing to come. I need something that’s going to be less War and Peace and more quick and easy read. It is October now. I really need to get myself in gear.

 

Okay, I think that’s it. My stomach is rumbling and I have a workout to get in, so have a fantastic day.

Expanding My Territory

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I am finally making moves to getting more growing space. In my community, there are garden plots available for rental for as low as $20USD per year. I’m not sure as to the specifics beyond that but, if this is still accurate, you’re reading the words of someone who is going to seize this opportunity as soon as it flies past her. For that princely sum, I would get a 4’ x 20’ plot to grow stuff in and a key to the growing space.

 

As much as I love the Aerogarden for snacks/light meals, it’s not sustainable for anything more than that in the long term. As it stands, I don’t have the room in my room to make a hydroponics system that could feed everyone I’d like to feed. So, with that door closed to me for the foreseeable future, my most feasible option is to get a soil based growing space and work from there. Heck, for the space advertised, I could feed a lot of people I’d like to feed. I’ve already promised some of the future harvest to one friend and another has automatic rights to the harvest as well because he’s such a good friend and has helped us tremendously. It’s only a question of getting the plot and supplies at this point.

 

It’s just a matter of getting the supplies to the growing space once I get it. I’m definitely going to grow tomatoes and peppers. While peppers might not need staking, the tomatoes I’d like to grow certainly will. For that, I’d need the supplies for a trellis system. I’d have no problems getting the stuff. I’d just need to figure out a way to get it to the site. I don’t know anyone with a truck, so I’d either have to walk it from where I live or hire someone. I really don’t think they’d let me on the bus with some of the supplies.

 

Seeds are no difficulty. In fact, they’re probably going to be one of the easiest things to acquire/transport. I’ll start them indoors here and then carry them to the grow site once they’re big enough to survive on their own.

 

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In other news, I’ve frogged the sweater/cardigan I was knitting for my mother and replaced it with a crochet pattern. I’m really not in the mood to knit right now. Especially not something as large as a cardigan. So, I’ve opted instead for the New Beginnings Bulky Sweater. It’s a nice, comfortable looking cardigan pattern by Agnes Russell. The best part about this pattern is that I’ll probably end up using even more of this hideous (don’t like the color) pink yarn since it is a crochet pattern. I’m definitely hoping to get this pattern finished by July or earlier.

 

Another good thing about this pattern is that I can take it with me. While the other sweater was on circular needles, there was always the fear in me that the knitting would slip off of the needles. No such fears with crocheting.

 

So, this is my new nighttime pattern until I finish the Boba Fett. Then, it’ll be my all day pattern.

 

For now though, I need to sleep. I have been having a lot of trouble sleeping lately. Good morning, All. 

Tantalizing Taste Extravaganza

 

On the 25th of January, I finally had a chance to do what the Maternal Parental had beaten me to. I was finally able to sample the fruit of the tomato vines I have growing in my room. I laid claim to the tomato in the foreground in the picture below.

 

After a little snip, the juicy and delectable morsel of fruit was mine for the eating. I savored every moment I had with this yummy parcel of photosynthetic sweetness but finally, I had to eat it. If only to save my sanity from the torment of being in such close proximity to a potentially delicious vessel of sweetness.

 

 

A taste explosion occurred, all at once, in my mouth! It was, to be honest, the best tomato I have ever eaten. It was sweet, juicy, and just the right firmness to give my taste buds a blast of rich, flavorful goodness. Thank you, Aerogarden, for making this possible!

 

Aside from that, I am continuing to work on the Obrigada Shawl for João’s aunt. It is about half done now. This Knit Picks yarn is fantastic to work with. It’s Swish Worsted in the colorway Serrano. It’s a 100% Superwash Merino wool which is very soft against the skin, yet strong enough to handle repeated frogging. I think she’s going to like it. I’m a lot further along than the picture below but this gives you an idea of the color as well as a picture of the pattern’s example picture. More advanced pictures coming as soon as I work my way through these two cakes of yarn I have hooked up to the project.

 

 

Oh yeah, threw my back out shoveling snow for the first time in my life. I shoveled the snow in front of my door, making a pathway to the shoveled portion my neighbors did. I estimate I lifted two to three hundred pounds of snow the other day. I shoveled until I got to pavement, for safety reasoning. I’m not 100% sure but I think my neighbor then went over it with road salt, because it was completely clear when I went back out later to take the garbage out. Nice people.

 

In other good news, The Maternal Parental watched the complete series of Cosmos: A SpaceTime Odyssey. Prior to this, all she had seen was Cosmos: A Personal Voyage. I’m so proud of her for accomplishing this. She was enlightened greatly by the series and amazed by how many scientific discoveries had happened after her schooling in the 1940s – 1950s. It also shed light upon how much they didn’t teach her in segregated schools of that time.

 

I’d better get back to this shawl now. I’m so close to the end, I’m putting aside all other projects to get it finished. It hurts my hands a lot less than those other projects. Later!

Last and First

I think I neglected to post the last project I completed in 2015. It was a doll for a friend of mine on the occasion of his birthday. I got it finished just in time too. The pattern information page is available via Ravelry – Hobbes by Ann Stiver-Balla.

 

 

So now we come to the first completed project of 2016. I made this hat for another friend of mine. He likes Hello Kitty and, when I discovered this, I immediately wanted to make him a hat I had seen on Ravelry. So, this is my attempt at upsizing this hat for a fully grown human man. Luckily, we have the same head measurements, so it wasn’t difficult keeping track. Pattern information available via Ravelry – Hello Kitty Hat by Elizabeth Pardue.

 

 

So, as of this moment, I’m turning skeins of bright red yarn into cakes with my Yarn Ball winder for a future shawl project because it is too dark to work on my current distraction. I’m FINALLY making my friend Sam his Boba Fett doll. *fanfare*

 

You are probably wondering why I’m spending so much time crocheting and knitting when I could be…sleeping. Well may you ask. Due to recent health issues with my current medications (edema, racing heart, etc), I’ve had to stop taking the one that stops the panic inducing nightmares from happening. So. No sleep for me. At least, very little in the sleep department, most of which is fretful. Such is life, I suppose.

 

Completely changing the subject: The Aerogarden Tomatoes.

They’re really taking off, as you can see in the above picture. I offer you a few close ups of the fruiting.

 

So far, I’ve got at least ten tomatoes with a lot more flowers coming in everyday. I try to do a trim as needed, usually about once every other week or so. I’m trying to maintain the health of the plants and ensure they keep flowering and fruiting for me.

 

Well, I’ve got to get back to winding up this yarn into cakes. Take care and Be Well.

Say Hello To My Little Friends

As you can see, I’m making a voodoo doll…no. Just kidding. Actually, this is the as yet unfinished Birthday Buddy Bunny for my little cousin. I’m hoping to get her finished by tonight and mailed off by Saturday. I’m incredibly tired right now though. So, I may have to ship it Priority and hope it gets there on or before her birthday.

 

In other news, my Aerogarden has shown quite significant growth among its plants. It’s almost unrecognizable from three weeks ago. Surprised smile

 

 

The Chives haven’t changed much but everything else is shooting up quite nicely. I will admit to eating a few…or more…of the leaves off of these plants over the past few weeks. Part of it was pruning, part of it was my being hungry. That’s all about to change though.

 

Starting today, I am not going to do anything to the Aerogarden of Hope except give it water. I want to see how far this machine can go as far as sustaining plants. Better to find it out now with the much less fickle herbs than when I get the tomatoes and peppers sitting in the Aerogarden.

 

I did a vlog on the Aerogarden of Hope’s progress tonight but I’m really not happy with the quality of it. So, I’m going to shoot another video tomorrow once I’ve gotten some rest. I’ve been up the past day and a half transferring most of the media on my computer to BD-RE disks. It is exhaustive, mind numbing, boring and tiring work but someone’s got to do it. Now that some 300gb of space is free on my computer, I can relax and enjoy how much more quickly it goes. I can also take my now portable media and look at it on a Bluray player if I so desire to.

 

Is everyone else ready for the upgrade to Windows 10? Apparently, I am. I got a special message from Microsoft offering me the opportunity to upgrade to WinX for free. Yeah, I know. I thought it was a scam or something too but it’s apparently genuine. I guess they got sick of the people holding on to 3.1 all these years. Joke. Hopefully, it won’t be a total cluster… of a situation with the upgrade. Embarrassed smile

 

This is actually the first time I’m keeping up with everyone on an upgrade in Windows. Normally, I stay on an OS version for years…possibly a decade or more. Don’t ask me about Windows 98…please. Crying face

 

Oh yeah….confession time. I recently bought some stuff from Knit Picks. Now, given both my yarn and book diet until 2017, I’m pretty ashamed of myself right now. I was supposed to refrain from buying either of these things until January 2017. The only thing I could have sort of justified was the purchase of the Shawl Pin I got. Though, I’m giving serious thought to re-evaluating this whole Yarn diet thing. I make regular trips very close to my LYS now and it would be a shame to wait until 2017 to go there when they have such good reviews and yummy yarns. So, I think I’m going to cancel the yarn diet and keep the book diet. Party smile

 

Got the Maternal Parental the three part series That’s Entertainment! and it’s a combination birthday/Mother’s day gift. This is her first Bluray.

 

Oh man, I am so tired.

 

Good night, Peoples of the Sun. Rolling on the floor laughingRed heartRainbow

Well, That Was…Interesting…

Baltimore City recently (27 April 2015) erupted into chaos. I, along with many others, sat watching it on live feeds and television, horrified by the violence. For any of you wondering, while I am from Baltimore City, I presently live in Baltimore County, so I’m well out of it. I appreciate your concerned messages though. Thank you for caring.

 

As far as I know, my family is okay. Thank you all for asking about them. Some were quite close to the action but stayed indoors and waited. As many of us did.

 

I will save the recriminations over who is ultimately responsible for this whole thing to more political and legal minds. I know what I’ve read and heard from the mouths of some though.

 

Moving on to other things, I am currently in the middle of doily three of the Cosmos Doily Madness. These doilies are for my friends on the occasion of their wedding…months ago. I’m hoping to give it to them by their anniversary. It should be done well before that time but, given how long it has taken me to get these done, I figured I’d give myself some leeway.

 

Sad news on the Health front. Doc F is leaving in July. I got a letter from him stating as much. Now, I’ve got to go get a new doctor. He was a pretty cool doctor too. I’m going to miss him. Crying face

 

Happy news on the health front. That Place has moved and…it moved less than a block from my Local Yarn Shop. Yep! I’ll be shopping at Cloverhill Yarn Shop from now on. I’m really looking forward to buying nice yarn when I’m finally off of my yarn diet. Don’t get me wrong. I love Knit Picks, Lion Brand, etc. but there’s something to be said about the appeal of being able to be tactile with the yarn you’re going to buy. One cannot do this when buying online. Open-mouthed smile

 

I’m planning on getting a butt load of Cascade Superwash 220 as well as whatever else they have that I like. I just have to get through my yarn diet which doesn’t end until 1 January 2017. I know, I’m a glutton for punishment. I love the colors and the fact that it’s Superwash yarn. I’m really looking forward to working with it. I’m also looking forward to socializing with other Knitters and Crocheters. Me…socializing. That’s so weird. Surprised smile

 

Okay, that’s enough rambling. Later! Rolling on the floor laughingRed heartRainbow

Finished the October Rust Birthday Shawl!!!!!

This 100% wool shawl took me from the 2nd of April 2015 until the 24th of April 2015 to complete. Its made with mostly Knit Picks Swish Tonal in the colorway Wine Tasting. The edging is Lion Brand’s Superwash Merino Cashmere in the colorway Green Tea. I began and ended it on Type O Negative’s October Rust album too. I haven’t blocked it yet but it is huge now. I might just leave it as it is since the overall shape and condition of it is good. I don’t know if I could handle it if it were bigger than this.

 

More pictures:

 

 

For my next trick, I’m going to work on three projects at once. The Cosmos Doily Madness – Black Doilies, the Keepsake Lace Shawl in purple acrylic thread (good grief!) and the Rainstorm II socks. I’m hoping to get all of this done by July. Well, the doilies, I could bust those out in two days or less actually. The other stuff, July. The doilies, Mid-May?

 

This is the first I’ve written in my blog in almost a week. Hi! I’ve been nervous beyond reason regarding a banking snafu that recently got rectified. So, I’m hoping to get back to writing tonight or sooner.

 

Well, I’d better get to those Cosmos Doilies while I have the light.

 

Later! Rolling on the floor laughingRed heartRainbow

New Day, New Cake of Yarn

And then there were four. I’m currently working on the second of five cakes of yarn in the making of the October Rust Birthday Shawl. Things are going quite smoothly and I’m attaching with no issues. I might take a picture once I’m a little further along in the crocheting but not now. Even though it is eventually going to be rather large, I consider this the portable project. This is the project I’ll take with me to Doctor’s appointments to work on. It’s easier to work with due to only having one cake of yarn attached rather than more than one like the Rainstorm II socks. I will get back to them…eventually, but right now, I’m enjoying crocheting.

 

In other news, I joined another social network. Unlike ones I’ve joined in the past, this one looks promising. It’s a social network for people who are non-monogamous as well as allies. It’s called openlove.community and this is my profile on the site. I have to say, I’m really looking forward to seeing how this one develops. If you add me, please, let me know where you’re coming from.

 

Last night, I did Day Six of the Writing Assignment. It was pretty cool. We were asked to write about the most interesting people or person we’ve met within the past year. I chose characters from the story I’m writing. I tried to get as in depth as I could about them considering I haven’t come close to finishing the story. This story I’m writing is about the formation of a Poly family from the perspective of a young mother who is involved in the relationship.

 

At least, that’s what I’m trying for. I do give glimpses into other people’s train of thought during the formation of the story. Currently, this story doesn’t even have more than a working title. I’ll cross that bridge when I come to it. It does flow rather well and my friends who’ve read it have all said that they like it. I did make a commitment to work on it for a minimum of one hour per day. I’m hoping to get the whole thing completed before September, so I can gear up for NaNoWriMo.

 

It’s 69F out today. Ugh, how disgusting. I miss the Winter even as I know that plants need the warmth to grow and produce the foods I like to eat. I don’t know how much more my allergies can take though. I’ve been coughing and sneezing up a storm since it warmed up. Crying face

 

That’s enough rambling for me. Growing a Greener World is on television.

 

Take care, Peoples of the Sun! Rolling on the floor laughingRed heartRainbow

How I Lost My Fear of Crafting, Part Two

Note: There was no prompt for me to post this today. I just felt like it. Call it me getting ahead of the assignments, if you will. Hopefully, I’ll be able to do all the daily prompts in addition to the Writing 101 prompts with no problems. Anyway, back to the story.

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One day, around the time of my twenty-fifth birthday, I decided I must learn to knit. By then, we had moved into a stable neighborhood and I was mentally stable even if still ragged around the psychological edges. I had come a long way from near complete mental breakdown up to this point and I was determined to treat myself with a self obtained accomplishment. Knitting was to be this accomplishment even if I had to bleed for it.

 

So, taking my meager savings, I bought a pounder skein of black yarn from Amazon along with the cheapest straight needles I could find. I ended up with a pound of Caron’s One Pound Yarn and a pair of 10” size 8 Susan Bates knitting needles. I was overjoyed to finally have the implements of knitting but I didn’t know the first thing about how to knit. I searched high and low on the internet but to no avail. This was 2006 after all. There was nothing there excepting a few sites and a few videos online.

 

Not having luck with searching online, I decided to go to the library website to see if they had any materials related to knitting. Wow, am I ever glad I did. They not only had materials relating to knitting but they also had an upcoming class at the Catonsville Library being taught by a famous knitting woman. I had no clue who she was but the words “Free Knitting Class” had me rushing to register. Lucky for me, there was still room in the class for a few more people. I was given the requirements for the class as well as the date and time to show up at the Library.

 

I showed up at the appointed time in the neighborhood I was barely familiar with. I was about twenty minutes early, so I spent my time fiddling with my needles and yarn while waiting for class to begin. Once I got the all clear to go to the classroom, off I went to my first lesson with sweaty palms and a leaping frog in my stomach.

 

The class was comprised of all women of varying ages and backgrounds all there for a single purpose: To Knit. One of the Library staff was there to introduce the Famous Knitting Woman whose name I cannot recall beyond “Knight” as her surname. In addition to Famous Knitting Woman, there were three teaching assistants who did most of the teaching.

 

Once everyone had been introduced, class was started. There was a knot in a skein of yarn being use for demonstration purposes and I was given an opportunity to show my party trick of getting near impossible knots out of bits of string. Famous Knitting Woman had gone to retrieve the scissors and before she could make it across the room, I had already gotten the knot out. She could hardly believe her eyes. I just shrugged and said that it was my talent before getting self conscious.

 

The class went well and, after the last two students (a mother and young daughter) showed up, we all settled into casting on the initial stitches. I was so nervous about dropping my needles that I held on for dear life and casted on stitches so tightly, they could scarcely be pierced. After a few tries, I managed to cast on reasonably loose stitches via the Long Tail Cast On and began attempting to knit. Famous Knitting Woman saw how I was knitting with the stitches far from the point and suggested I move them up to the very tip to aid in my knitting becoming speedier. However, I was so nervous, I kept dropping stitches and eventually fell into a habit of keeping them back which has stayed with me even up to today.

 

Soon, the class was coming to its end and Famous Knitting Woman made suggestions of things we should buy, books we should read and tools we should consider acquiring to aid in our progress as knitters. By then, it was dark and, after saying goodbye to everyone, I walked back to the dark bus stop in a daze that I had finally learned something of the basics of knitting. However, on getting home, I began doing something wrong and I knew it but didn’t know how to fix the error. It would be from 20 June 2006 until 6 August 2006 until I finally found a fix for my problem.

 

All during the Summer, I focused on reading knitting books and practicing by knitting on “the Object” until my hands bled. I’m not kidding, my hands got blisters and bled from the amount of practice I got in on those needles and yarn. Yet, try as I might, nothing I did seemed to fix the problem of the extra stitch. I didn’t know what I was doing but, for some reason, I went from ten stitches to eleven and onwards until I had an unwieldy project sitting on my aluminium needles. Still, I kept at it even as my hands bled and my eyes turned bloodshot from so many hours of staring at the same project. I didn’t give up.

 

One day in August, we got a call that my Maternal Grandfather was in the hospital. Apparently, my uncle from my Grandfather’s second marriage contacted the family via my aunt. We were invited to a cookout to give the family a chance to know each other. Less than one week later, my Grandfather was dead from his illness. The stress of having to deal with so much during that time drove me to escape into the world of knitting.

 

Giving up on “the Object”, I searched high and low on the Internet again until I came across the KnittingHelp website. Amy Finlay’s videos quite literally kept me sane as I learned to properly knit for the first time since June. I practiced throughout the night until the morning of the Wake. Once we were at the funeral home, I retreated further into my knitting and managed a pretty decent looking beginner’s scarf. For the first time, but not the last time, knitting kept me from blowing my top at an inappropriate moment.

 

Part Three, the final installment comes tomorrow. Rolling on the floor laughingRed heartRainbow

Finish It!!!

 

 

Say hello to my two newest friends. Bookcases One and Two took me less than three hours total time to assemble and, I have to say it, they’re wonderful.

 

In truth, I needed them because my room was a lesson in chaos. I had DVDs and Blu-rays stacked against my closet door and books stacked on a stand in one corner of my room. Now, I have organization and I love it. With the installation of the bookcases, my head feels so much clearer. Sun

 

 

Now, down to business. This doily is getting completed on or before the seventeenth. I was ill (again) with a cold and allergies and couldn’t crochet during that time. So, I’m going to spend all of tonight listening to music and crocheting. Hopefully, I’ll make some headway with the doily. If all goes well, I’ll get a wing done by the end of tonight and another done by the end of the day.

 

Incidentally, I found the yarn for that commission. Now all I’ve got to do is convince the intended recipient of the $35.00USD worth of the gloves. Considering the formula standard used for pricing knitted and crocheted objects, she’s getting it for cheap. Most of the people I’ve come across double the price of the yarn (assuming the crafter is acquiring it) plus time and labor. Oddly enough, no one ever wants to pay this. Crafting. It’s a labor of love. Crying face

 

Onto other topics. My Spring Crazy has been unleashed. I transplanted/made cuttings of my Pelargoniums and Coleus. I finally also got rid of the main Coleus pot from last year. Specifically the plants, the pot was reused for Pelargoniums. Right now, I have a sea of Pelargoniums sitting on and around my windowsills. I’m really hopeful that they’ll grow.

 

I know I should have done this stuff weeks ago but the bug to do it just hit me. I’m just hopeful that the Pelargoniums take root/survive the transplant shock.

 

One thing I cannot wait to get is a Golden Pothos plant. Hopefully, I’ll find one cheap at the supermarket before it closes its doors for good in April. Bookcase One is in a very sunny location in my room and is an ideal spot for such a plant. Though, I’d better go on the prowl for containers to prevent water getting on Bookcase One. Red rose

 

That’s enough whining. Now, for me to get to work. Later, Earthlings! Rolling on the floor laughingRed heartRainbow

Hello, Earthlings…

Say hello to my little friend.

 

No, wait.

 

Say hello to Kathleen’s Coffee Table Topper at seventeen rounds. This pattern has a tendency to bunch up early on, before the wings are crocheted on. It is fully round, I can assure you.

 

My original finish date of the 7th of March has been postponed until the 9th. I have a really bad cold on top of allergies. For those in the know of what that feels like, you can imagine what I’m going through right now. Crying face

 

I’m starting to feel marginally better though. With that improvement, my crochet skills have increased.

 

Ran across an interesting quiz on a friend’s Facebook page. It’s called the ACE Study Quiz and it measures the impact of Childhood trauma on adult health outcomes. It is featured in an NPR story about the ten questions most doctors are afraid to ask.

 

You just know I aced this one. /sarcasm. Actually, I got an eight out of ten on this particular quiz. Apparently, most people score a 2-4. Overachiever, I am. Smile with tongue out

 

I’m not up to much today. Just installing a Blu-ray burner/player in my computer and watching ALL THE DVDs and BLU-RAYS! I may also slink out to get some food. I am still in the process of replying to people. Who knew I was so darn popular? Yes, this includes you, Lotta. It’s funny, because normally, I don’t get a drop of e-mail outside of a few friends and, suddenly, I’m bombarded with a slew of correspondence from all over the world. I’m not complaining as I love talking with the people who’ve written. I just find this communication uptick interesting.

 

Incidentally, while out paying the Renter’s insurance, I got a possible commission for a pair of gloves. A part of me wants to make them for free but I need to pay for things. Now, if I can just find three skeins of Wine colored Superwash Cashmere Merino Wool yarn in my stash without hitting up Lion Brand, I’ll be a happy camper. Thankfully, the commission is for a woman with normal sized hands, so that’s not as much knitting as I normally have to do for myself. I could probably bust them out in a week, assuming I can find that yarn.

 

I got another request for a Hobbes Doll. As I do this for free, per the request of the pattern designer and the general feeling of the creator of Calvin and Hobbes, I had to temporarily decline the request until July. I should be finished with all the commissions and promised items I have in place by then. Cashy money pays bills and thus comes first while promised items to friends come second.

 

The clever irony in all of this is that I still haven’t made MY Winter gear and it’s almost Spring. I’m too darn self-sacrificing.

 

Anyway, I wish you all a pleasant and happy weekend filled with the finest everything good. Rolling on the floor laughingRed heartRainbow

Taking Classes

Sort of…

 

Thank you, MIT for starting OpenCourseWare as a thing. Due to your generosity, I am able to take classes I wouldn’t normally be able to take due to the Agoraphobia. Specifically, I am taking:

 

Fundamentals of Biology
Introduction to Biology
Introductory Biology
Introduction to Psychology
Atomic and Optical Physics
Quantum Physics I and II
The Early Universe
Exploring Black Holes: General Relativity and Astrophysics
Engineering Mathematics: Linear Algebra and ODEs
Geometric Folding Algorithms
STEM Concept Videos
Engineering Dynamics
Chemistry Behind the Magic
Introduction to Algorithms
Probabilistic Systems Analysis and Applied Probability
Linear Algebra Recitations
Discrete Stochastic Processes
Differential Equations
Introduction to Computer Science and Programming
Introductory Quantum Mechanics II

 

I’m going to be very contentedly busy over the next few weeks. My computer choked several times getting the videos for the classes, but I managed it in the end. Open-mouthed smile

 

In addition to this, I’ve started a pair of socks. Called Rainstorm II, these are the first non-Lion Brand wool socks I’ve made. I got the yarn from Knit Picks. It’s Stroll Hand-painted in the colorway Crystal Hand-painted.

 

 

I am doing them two at a time, so that I can have a pair of socks by the end of the labor. I’m working primarily at night, though, I may make this my carrying project for when I leave the house to go on appointments. They are so soft… Smile

 

I’m also working on Kathleen’s Other Doily. Her Coffee Table Topper is coming along quite well.

 

 

In addition to all of that, I’m still working on Bruce’s Gloves. The good news is, I’m out of the ribbing and into the body. The bad news is, I cannot really see the black yarn at night. I mean, I can see its physical form on my table but I cannot determine definition of the yarn thread. I think it might be time to see the eye doctor.

 

 

Glaucoma and Cataracts both run in my family. So, it’s only a matter of time, I suppose, until I’m diagnosed. I’m really hoping for it to be much later in my life. Annoyed

 

So far, so good on the sleeping front. I have been sleeping a normal amount of hours. I’ve been getting restful sleep and no nightmares of a PTSD nature. Wow, that medication really works!

 

About the only things I really need to do are get back in contact with people I haven’t contacted since this whole thing began and clean my room.

 

The communication is coming people. Prepare yourselves. Later! Rolling on the floor laughingRed heartRainbow